Tohorā - a breakthrough tool for protecting our moana for Sustainable Seas

In a significant step for marine management, Sustainable Seas, in collaboration with Daylight, has unveiled Tohorā - a landmark research tool that will transform how we manage our marine environment. 

Tohorā is Aotearoa’s first AI-powered search tool in the science sector. It’s powered by the findings of the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge - an extensive marine research initiative that has funded over 100 world-leading research projects for the last decade.

Tohorā allows us to process and analyse this extensive body of work, rapidly distilling key findings into straightforward summaries. It does this through a natural language search function, increasing accessibility and reach.

Its purpose is to inform policy and management, shape sustainable business decisions, structure school lessons, and empower community groups to take meaningful real-world action.

Says Dr Julie Hall, Director of Sustainable Seas, “The aim of Tohorā is for this decade of extensive research to remain accessible to researchers, policymakers, councils, iwi, communities, and businesses alike. By doing so, we can ensure the knowledge created during the Challenge continues to inform decision-making, enhance ecologic health, and shape marine management practices and policies in Aotearoa.”

Tohorā is named after our mighty whales, the guardians of our ancestors, who guided our tūpuna across vast oceans. Now, Tohorā is showing us a way once more, toward stronger marine ecosystems that will positively impact generations to come.

Says Kyle Hickey, Digital Design Director, "The beauty of Tohorā lies in its simplicity and depth. Using AI, it consults a vast amount of research, condenses this knowledge, and provides proven ways to protect our moana. It’s knowledge guiding change."

Encompassing the launch is a supporting campaign featuring Sustainable Seas Kāhui Kaumatua Joe Harawira (Ngāti Awa, Ngai te Rangi, Ngati Maniapoto and Tūhourangi). Not only an international storyteller, he advises on tikanga protocols in te ao Māori as they relate to conservation.

Tohorā is ready to explore. For more information, visit

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